By George Wolf, Movie Critic
Considering what they had to work with, the marketing department in charge of Movie 43 did an admirable job.
In the trailers, you see a ton of major stars, and little snippets of scenes that make this movie look so insane and offensive, you may feel like you have to see it for yourself to find out why all these big names signed on.
Donâ€™t waste your time.
In fact, seeing the film only makes it harder to understand why talents such as Kate Winslet, Hugh Jackman, Naomi Watts, Emma Stone and Halle Berry wanted to be a part of such an empty enterprise.
The film is basically a series of skits and parody commercials, loosely tied together as part of a movie pitch that a struggling filmmaker (Dennis Quaid) is making to a big studio honcho (Greg Kinnear).
As Quaidâ€™s character describes how his movie is really going to beÂ â€śabout something,â€ť we see various scenes played out. Thereâ€™s Winslet on a blind date with Jackman, who seems perfect until he reveals a very embarrassing deformity. Watts and real-life husband Liev Schreiber play parents who are home-schooling their son and go overboard in making sure he gets the full high school experience. And, for superhero fans, we see Batman (Jason Sudeikis) show up and sabotage Robin (Justin Long) on his first try at speed dating.
Speaking of dates, how about Chris Pratt and Anna Faris (another real-life couple) trying to satisfy a pretty offensive romantic request, young Chloe Grace Moretz caught totally unprepared by her first monthly visitor while making out with her boyfriend, Stone and Kieran Culkin talking dirty over a grocery store intercom and Halle Berry engaging in some extreme truth or dare adventures with her dinner companion.
In perhaps the funniest segment, Terence Howard stars in a sendup of â€śHoosiersâ€ť as a basketball coach explaining to his team of African-American kids that they donâ€™t need to fear the team of short, white country kids they are about to play.
Oh, did I mention the leprechaun that Sean William Scott and Johnny Knoxville have tied up in their basement?
The overall aim of the various writers and directors behind Movie 43 may have been to poke fun at the patronizing nature of Hollywood. Unfortunately, this barrage of raunchy, scatological humor doesnâ€™t get that job done. Aside from a few scattershot moments,Â it just isnâ€™t very funny, ending up the latest in a long line of January disappointments.